NFL FOOTBALL PICKS - FREE WEEKLY ATS PREDICTIONS
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Despite their loss last week, the Saints are still in the NFC South race. They host the Lions next week before playing 3 of their last 4 on the road. They need this win and can’t afford a loss. Los Angeles is playing out the string and aren’t serious playoff contenders. I expect a rested, focused New Orleans squad to score early and often and get a badly-needed cover at home.
Both teams have identical even .500 records coming into this one and in dire need of a win. Both usually have to rely heavily on a passing game behind two gunslingers at quarterback, but with Luck most likely out of the lineup we could be in store for the Big Ben show on Thursday night.
This is definitely a wait and see game; however with the line shifting up to seven points after the Steelers opened as 2.5-point road favorites it is pretty much a given that Tolzien will be under center for Indianapolis. If that ends up being the case, take Pittsburgh on the road to cover against the toothless Colts.
The fact that this game is being played in Mexico City could actually benefit the Raiders, who are a perfect 5-0 ATS this season when they are not playing at the Oakland Coliseum. The only concern could be their even 2-2 record when closing as favorites.
Both teams come into this game with winning records, but I still give the clear edge to Oakland in a SU win. While the Raiders have had little problem scoring points lately, I am going with the OVER 46 as my “best bet” with both teams having success lighting up the scoreboard this Monday night in an effort to put on a show for a neighbors to the south.
The Giants are ever more vulnerable for an overreaction after pulling off the sensational win on Monday night for national audiences. Generally the winner of a Monday night is a public favorite the following week and we are seeing this take shape with Big Blue. The Giants also own wins over Philadelphia, New Orleans and Baltimore at home so there is a high level of expectation when the G-Men are home. As a result of a surge of New York successes coupled with some appalling defeats of Chicago, the varying directions in the stock of both teams is guiding the number here. Given the Bears 0-5 road record, the Monsters of the Midway are poised to be the next sacrifice to be witnessed at MetLife Stadium. Steady steam on New York suggests that Chicago cannot be bought for any price which actually plays in to our favor. The Giants are not a good enough team even if they have the victories and the offense in sync to back up this price. The Giants’ offense is still suspect and given the fact they can easily have an off night, more than a touchdown is way too much to spot here.
We are going to take a contrarian angle and fade a heavy lean that is most likely the result of a reaction to what transpired on Monday Night. The loser of the Monday Night game is often a popular fade in the corresponding week. However, Cincy could have easily won the game as fast as they lost it. While the record for the Bengals is tough to stomach, bettors should be abreast of the fact that the Bengals are 2-1 at Paul Brown Stadium, this year. Buffalo rightfully so should be casted as an underdog in this affair as this team has accumulated at least 25 points in the last three games and still could not find a way to finish off with a victory. Buffalo’s offense is still prone to stalling at any given point as they had immense trouble getting their rushing attack started. While Cincy’s defense may roll out a red carpet, Buffalo’s defense seems to be even more accommodating.
The Seahawks appear to be rolling right now as they have lost only 1 game in their last 7. They also have one of the best home field advantages, a surging QB and a defense, while not the elite unit of seasons past, that can still get the job done when it is needed. I expect Wentz to have trouble with the noise and this defense and for Wilson to continue his hot play. The number is less than a converted TD and I expect Seattle to stay on their course to the playoffs.
Over the past 4 weeks these two teams have combined for 1 win, 1 tie and 5 losses (Arizona had a bye). Minnesota still has a decent defense but they are starting to wear down due to attrition and knowing they have little margin for error. The Cardinals have scored 23+ points in 4 of their past 5 games as they can run and pass the ball, although with some inconsistency. This is a must-win game for both clubs so I expect desperation to play a big part in the outcome. I’ll side with the visitor in this one as they have many more weapons on offense and are playing a little better as of late.
Green Bay has found ways to turn things around in the past and despite its current form you would have to think that it can still turn things around this season starting with a SU win on the road this Sunday. Just about every one of the Redskins’ games this season has remained tight to the final gun (win or lose) and this matchup has the makings of another close finish.
Look for Aaron Rodgers to play one of his better games this season as the Packers rally to get that much needed win.
Miami is playing well right now and a 2nd-straight game in California won’t affect them. Tannehill has responded well to the tutelage of HC Adam Gase over the past month and Ajayi is punishing defenses. On the flip side, the Rams have scored 10 points or fewer in their last 3 games. Gurley is finding no room and the passing game lacks dynamic performers. With the spread a non-factor, I like the Dolphins to get their 5th-straight win this weekend.
The Saints have flourished ATS as underdogs this season and they appear to be playing their best ball on the road. Carolina’s inconsistencies from one week to the next have made this team a betting nightmare this season.
Conventional wisdom might dictate that the Panthers even the score this Sunday following the earlier loss in New Orleans, but I still like the Saints’ chances to keep this a three point game either way. I will take the four points on the road and bank on New Orleans staying perfect ATS this season as underdogs.
The Bengals have not played up to expectations this season, but they still have the ability to score points behind a very balanced offense. The Giants have played much more consistent the past three weeks, but this remains a team that can quickly go off the rails at a moment’s notice.
I think a well-rested Cincinnati team is actually in perfect position to take advantage of a New York team that could be poised for a letdown after almost blowing last week’s lead. Take the points and take the Bengals on the road in a game I have them winning SU. Note: The line has since moved to Bengals -1, but David still thinks that their is value in backing Cincinnati.
No matter where we turn here there is juice required at any wager. The mere fact the most juice comes on Houston outright or Jacksonville with a point and a half, suggests that the market is extremely sharp in this market and that the books are taking a stance on this game. We want no part of juice but even if Jacksonville were to lose this game, there is more equity in reducing our overhead by 12% taking the Jags outright than playing it safe and taking back a point and a half. Bottom line, Houston has lost three games on the road this year and that is where all their troubles have piled up this season. Jacksonville is hungry for a win and they know they can beat good teams as they took down Indianapolis earlier this year in London. The Jags have also defeated Chicago on the road to name their other win on the year, so this team has a great chance to be a live pooch when none suspect them.
The line is no fluke, Pittsburgh has a robust home field advantage especially when the games are of significance later in the season. The book has taken in this in to consideration and that’s why the price is what you see here. This market is no gift and is likely fool’s gold for any that dare touch it. Dallas has won seven games but some of those wins could have easily been losses, i.e. Philadelphia. Needless to say the Cowboys may be stepping in to a situation where they are facing an opponent looking for a staple win this season as a lot of hype and scrutiny followed the Steelers in to this season after they were seemingly heisted of a Super Bowl berth last year due to an injury to Antonio Brown by way of the antics of Cincinnati’s Vontae Burfict. Pittsburgh will enter this contest hungry and perhaps expose the Dallas secondary who has been filled to the brink with all kinds of injuries. An offense-oriented game favors the Steelers as Pittsburgh’s could be the best in the game when firing at all cylinders.
The Packers didn’t seem ready to play last week and Rodgers wasn’t shy about letting everybody know it. They gave up a return TD on the opening kickoff and never recovered. Conversely, the Titans gave up 2 TDs on offense last week and lead the NFL with 7 return TDs allowed. I expect Green Bay to bounce back in this game and for the offense to come in focused. Tennessee’s run defense collapsed last week (208 yards), a bad sign for a team trying to stay in a division race (which they are still in). The Packers know their division is wide open and they can’t afford another letdown this week. The number is less than a FG and I expect Rodgers to be the difference in this contest.
The Falcons are playing very well right now, especially on offense. In wins over Green Bay and Tampa Bay over the past 2 weeks, they have put up 76 points. Ryan is playing at a very high level compared to Wentz and I expect his play to be the difference in this outcome. With the spread being only 1 point, I see Atlanta improving to 5-1 on the road this season.
This is a game between 2 bad teams that have each won only 3 games. The Rams can’t score and the Jets once solid defense has had issues. Without a top wideout or marquee QB to worry about, I see the New York defense responding in a big way this week. If they can contain Gurley, they will put the game in Keenum’s hands. Los Angeles has lost 4 straight games in part due to Keenum’s TO issues. Forte still has a lot left and I expect him to get 25+ touches in this contest and for Marshall and/or Enunwa to have a big game. This will be the Rams 3rd cross country trip of the year and after a 3-0 start, they are fading fast.
This matchup has the potential to be as exciting as watching paint dry with two of the lowest scoring offenses in the league squaring off against one another. A low-scoring grinder would keep the Browns in this game deep into the fourth quarter, so I would be a bit leery about laying that many points in a division rivalry.
What I do feel good about is a play on the UNDER 45 in a game that will struggle to cross the 40-point mark when it comes to the total score.
Buffalo’s weaknesses on both sides of the ball have been exposed in its last two games and without McCoy in the backfield its biggest strength has been greatly diminished. I have been saying that the Seahawks are one of the most overrated teams in the NFL and they proved me right in their last two games.
I would have to lean towards the Seattle getting the SU win on its home field, but when it comes to betting on this game I am going with the UNDER on the current 44-point total line.
Though Philly has the psychological edge in this contest, we can’t help but focus on the fact the public is all over a dog. This is a rarity and often spells concern as the favorite, is usually a favorite for a reason. The Giants have done well in this role and home field advantage is a huge part of this rivalry series as both teams bank on the energy of home field to pick up wins. The Eagles have compiled some commendable victories and this is the narrative likely driving the action for many players in this situation. However, MetLife Stadium is a very difficult place to play and given the fact the Eagles struggle on the road this market says stay off Philly. If anything these precepts compel us to spot the home points with Big Blue and fade the public altogether. Look for this contest to be a game of inches as this will likely be a low scoring affair. The Giants offense is not this team’s bread and butter and the only way they can orchestrate the win is if they win on their terms.
As we highlighted in the Philadelphia-New York game, it is rare to see the public all over a dog especially a dog that is going in to a hostile environment against a football team that is undefeated on their own turf. Minnesota’s two losses have compelled many to lose faith in just two weeks. This is a football team that took down Carolina, Green Bay and Houston through sound offense and proficient defense. Detroit has pulled off many wins with spitwad and glue. Minnesota is at another echelon and the points given are not by any means a gift or a charity case. The Vikings have one of the most balanced teams on both sides of the football in the league. Do not be fooled by the recent skid, this is a young team and for the most part young teams go through ebbs and flows like Minnesota. The Vikings have the potential to do more than just repeat as NFC North Champs, they have the capability to perhaps be playing for games of a much larger scale. Look for Detroit to be outclassed in this one.